By Jan Arden
The long-delayed report from the commission of inquiry, set up on Thursday 17 May 2018, in the wake of the resignation of former President of the Republic Ameenah Gurib-Fakim, has been submitted last week and been the subject of comments from the PM and his ministerial colleagues and raised several questions in the media and legal fraternity. Lex comments further on.
To the layman, beyond the happy or unhappy timing, and with the benefit of several recent such Commissions, we are perplexed by some questions that may require the Supreme Court to clarify where matters stand unequivocally. Such questions as the President’s immunity and its extent in the exercise of his or her duties or whether he or she can be considered as a Public Officer liable to the Financial Intelligence and Anti-Money Laundering Act, and other such matters that a totally unique situation — the potential penal case against former President Ameenah Gurib-Fakim (AGF) –, has brought up.
We can only remind ourselves that former President AGF was a political appointee of then PM Sir Anerood Jugnauth, sanctioned by a simple parliamentary vote with some pressure apparently applied by a key ally, Ivan Collendavelloo, to have this appointment done as rapidly as possible in 2015, even allegedly proposing to that end an unceremonious ouster of the lady’s predecessor, Kailash Purryag.
In one way or another, her personal standing as a scientific and a candidate from the fairer sex must have weighed in the outcome of the general elections of end 2014 and her appointment therefore bore little or no objection. She made it clear, on the strength of SAJ’s approval as PM, that she had no intention to be a simple figurehead and several international organisations readily took note of a rare articulate female personae at such a prestigious post and sought her presence at advocacy functions she happily took up.
When the press raised the question of a travelling “back-packer” President constantly on the move, or even her involvement with Planet Earth Institute (PEI), she relied on Ivan Collendavelloo and more importantly SAJ’s stellar support to weather the growing media storm about her trips and advocacy functions including any “indecorous” shopping sprees on various trips. Read More… Become a Subscriber
Mauritius Times ePaper Friday 23 September 2022
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